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Epic Games v. Apple case just dropped another bombshell about Microsoft

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Microsoft logo (Image credit: Daniel Rubino / Windows Central)

What you need to know

  • A confidential document from the Epic Games v. Apple case claims that Epic is trying to get Microsoft games onto its store.
  • Epic claims that Microsoft requires indie devs to agree to games being on Xbox Game Streaming to get published on the Xbox platform.
  • The document also states that Xbox chief Phil Spencer meets with Valve's Gabe Newell occasionally.

The Epic Games v. Apple trial continues to yield news related to Microsoft. A 222-page confidential document from the trial, which has allegedly been confirmed to be real by The Verge, discusses how Epic competes with Steam. The most pertinent information in relation to the case is likely that Epic offered Sony $200 million for at least four first-party PlayStation games last year, but the document also sheds light on Microsoft's relationship with Epic.

In addition to trying to convince, and pay, Sony to bring its games over to the Epic Game Store, Epic Games has attempted to get Microsoft to bring games to the store, according to the document. "Their PC Game Pass leader is against what we're doing," reads the document, which adds that Microsoft is "effectively bidding against us for content."

The document alleges that Xbox chief Phil Spencer "is meeting with Gabe [Newell] at Valve occasionally." That text appears in the same section of the document that discusses Microsoft's Xbox Game Pass efforts. There are rumors that Valve is trying to get Xbox Game Pass onto Steam, which could be related (via GameRant).

Microsoft Indie Devs

Source: The Verge (Image credit: Source: The Verge)

The document claims that Microsoft requires indie devs to agree to Xbox Game Streaming in order to have a game published on Xbox. "Microsoft is using harsh language around the requirement," says Epic, which adds that it's "sign or be removed from Xbox."

Windows Central has reached out to Microsoft for comment. We'll update this post if Microsoft responds.

Sean Endicott
News Writer and apps editor

Sean Endicott brings nearly a decade of experience covering Microsoft and Windows news to Windows Central. He joined our team in 2017 as an app reviewer and now heads up our day-to-day news coverage. If you have a news tip or an app to review, hit him up at sean.endicott@futurenet.com (opens in new tab).

6 Comments
  • "Epic claims that Microsoft requires indie devs to agree to games being on Xbox Game Streaming to get published on the Xbox platform" Well duh, it makes sense, streaming is an integral part of the Xbox platform. I see nothing wrong with this in any angle.
  • I kind of with you on this one. Not sure why this would be a problem.
  • Not if it doesn't require any extra work on the part of the developer.
    Even then, MS *pays* for Gamepass participation so it's not as if they're extorting them.
  • Wouldn't this be a win for devs? It allows more people to access their game without requiring a console or powerful computer.
  • Epic is one of the big companies without an entry into streaming.
    And if streaming goes big, especially on TVs, their investment in a PC store ($300M+) goes for nought.
    They have great coders but their management doesn't exactly have a long term plan in mind. Their strategies are all for the world that was, still useful in that world that is but not much longer.
    Any big changes will be bad for them.
    Rather like the traditional rocket businesses (Ariane, Boeing, Roscosmos, etc) vs SpaceX, way behind the state of the art Falcon 9 at a time SpaceX is prototyping their next gen system.
    Companies comfortable with the status quo are never happy when game changing disruptions roll out.
  • Wait, Epic's the one that's requiring the devs to stream games exclusively on their platforms, but Microsoft's the bad guy for requiring streaming, a future key part of the Xbox experience, in order to be on the Xbox platform? Really? Look, I'd love Epic to open up iOS to app sideloading, but, c'mon, Epic, this isn't you being the good guys and Microsoft being the bad guys here.